As the temperature rises, finding the perfect balance between comfort and cost becomes an art. But fear not! This blog will guide you through the sweltering summer months with recommended thermostat settings and energy-efficient tips to help you keep cool without breaking the bank.
Ideal Temperature Settings
When it comes to thermostat settings, finding the sweet spot is crucial. We suggest the following settings:
- According to the Department of Energy, setting your thermostat to a comfortable 78°F will keep you cool without draining your wallet.
- To save energy while you’re away, bump the thermostat to 88°F. It may not be as cool as you’d like, but it will prevent your A/C from working overtime while you’re away.
Tips to Maximize Cooling Efforts
Texas summers can be relentless, but with a few smart strategies, you can maximize your cooling efforts and save money. Here are some tips to keep you ahead of the heat wave:
Use window treatments to block sunlight
Those glorious Texas rays may bring warmth but also unwanted heat. Utilize window treatments like blinds, shades, or curtains to keep the sun’s scorching rays at bay. Your A/C will thank you for it.
Install weatherstripping and caulk around doors and windows
Air leaks are like tiny gaps inviting the heat to crash your indoor oasis. Seal them off with weatherstripping and caulk to keep the cool air inside and the hot air outside.
Limit the use of heat-generating appliances
Your oven, stove, and other appliances radiate heat like a bonfire on a summer night. Opt for outdoor grilling or quick stovetop meals to reduce the heat load in your home.
Install ceiling fans
Ceiling fans are the unsung heroes of Texas summers. They create a cooling breeze that makes a room feel cooler. Plus, they use far less energy than air conditioners. So, turn on those fans and let the wind do its magic.
Replace cooling units with energy-efficient models
If your cooling unit has seen better days, consider upgrading to an energy-efficient model. Newer units are designed to cool more effectively while consuming less energy. It’s a win-win situation for both your comfort and your pocket.
Finding the Right Temperature for Your Family
Each family is unique, and what feels comfortable to one may not be the same for another. It’s all about finding that sweet spot where everyone feels content. Here are a couple of pointers to guide you:
Experiment to determine the average comfortable range
Start by setting the thermostat within ASHRAE’s preferred temperature range of 73°F to 79°F. Monitor your family’s comfort level and adjust accordingly. It may take some trial and error, but finding that ideal temperature is worth it.
ASHRAE’s preferred temperature range: 73°F to 79°F
The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) suggests a temperature range of 73°F to 79°F for optimal comfort and energy efficiency. However, feel free to make slight adjustments based on your family’s preferences.
Nighttime Temperature Considerations
Restful sleep is essential, especially during hot Texas nights. Consider the following tips to create a cool and comfortable sleeping environment:
- Thermoneutrality refers to the optimal temperature at which your body can maintain its core temperature without excessive energy expenditure. For most people, this falls around 65°F to 72°F. Experiment with different nighttime temperatures to find the range that promotes better sleep.
- During the night, your body’s temperature naturally decreases. To avoid excessive cooling, raise the thermostat a few degrees and use lighter bedding materials like cotton or bamboo. This allows for better airflow and helps regulate your body temperature while you sleep.
Keep an Eye on the Humidity
Humidity can make even the coolest temperatures feel unbearable. Here’s how you can combat it:
The impact of humidity on comfort
High humidity levels can make the air feel heavy and muggy, leading to discomfort. You can enhance your overall comfort by managing humidity, even at slightly higher temperatures.
Air conditioners’ role in reducing humidity
Did you know that air conditioners cool the air and reduce humidity? Ensure your A/C unit is in good working condition and properly sized for your space to control humidity levels effectively.
Ideal humidity level: 30 to 50 percent
Aim for a humidity level of 30 to 50 percent in your home. This range provides a comfortable environment and helps prevent issues like mold and mildew.
Supplementing with fans
Combined with your A/C, strategically using fans can help improve airflow and create a more pleasant atmosphere. Stand fans, table fans, or even handheld fans can provide that extra breeze you need to combat the humidity.
The Importance of a Programmable Thermostat
Consider installing a programmable thermostat to simplify temperature adjustments and optimize energy usage. Here’s why it’s a game-changer:
- A programmable thermostat allows you to preset temperature changes throughout the day, so you don’t have to remember to adjust it manually. Set it and forget it—let the thermostat do the work for you.
- Smart thermostats take things up a notch by learning your preferences and adjusting temperature settings accordingly. They can even be controlled remotely through your smartphone, providing convenience and energy-saving opportunities.
- Some programmable thermostats also offer humidity control features, allowing you to set specific humidity levels and maintain a comfortable environment throughout the day.
Summer in Texas doesn’t have to be a battle against the heat. By implementing these recommended thermostat settings and energy-efficient practices, you can strike the perfect balance between comfort and cost.
Arrow Energy can help you take charge of your energy future today!